DALLAS (SMU) – Senior midfielder Claire Oates netted a game-winning header in the 97th minute to propel the SMU women’s soccer team to a 1-0 overtime win against No. 17 Arkansas Friday at Westcott Field.
“I thought we played really hard — both teams competed really hard,” SMU head coach Chris Petrucelli said. “It was a real battle, a real tough game and I am really happy with how we competed. It was a really good win for us and gives us some confidence moving forward. It lets us know we can compete at a high level and we did compete for sure.”
From 50 yards out, junior Haley Thompson served a free kick into the goal box, where Oates got above the Arkansas (0-1-0) defense and floated a header into the upper corner. A jumping Rachel Harris attempted to make the save but the effort fell short.
As a team, SMU recorded 10 shots, with four players recording two or more. Freshman Isabelle Nashmi led the Mustangs (1-0-0) with three, while Oates, Lauren Guerra and Allie Thornton each tallied two. SMU topped the Razorbacks in shots and corner kicks, 10-8 and 11-5, respectively.
SMU opened the first 45 minutes on the offensive, outshooting Arkansas, 5-2, and forcing eight corner kicks. Arkansas threated in the second half with six shots, but veteran goalkeeper Catie Brown, along with the backline, stopped all five shots on goal and send the match to overtime. The SMU defense recorded the first clean sheet of the year, allowing eight total shots and only five corner kicks.
Up next, SMU will host No. 16 Oklahoma on Sunday at 7 p.m. SMU offers free admission to all Mustang soccer matches beginning this fall.The game will be aired on PonyUp TV, with Steve Lansdale making the call. Live stats are also provided on SMUMustangs.com.